If you ask anyone to picture a real estate agent in their mind, you could probably place a bet that the picture would most certainly be a female. And for good reason; while female Realtors make up 62% of Realtors nationwide, it wasn’t always this way. Like most industries, up until the mid-20th century the real estate industry was dominated by men. Even so, beginning in the 1930’s, women began showing up: to sell homes, to national conventions, and to be elected to leadership positions.
It was at this time that the National Association of Real Estate (NAR) Boards witnessed this growth of women working in real estate, as well as an increased participation of women at the national conventions, and encouraged that a national Women's Council should be formed. At the time, NAR had been around for 30 years, but most decisions were still made by members of local real estate boards — most of whom were resistant to offering memberships to women. However, NAR was ready to recognize women in the industry, and a positive vote outcome resulted in the formation of a women's division at the Annual Convention in 1938. Thirty-seven ambitious women represented nine states at that meeting for the Women's Council of Realtors' (WCR) inception.
Today the WCR is a nationwide community of 16,000 real estate professionals (the twelfth largest U.S. women’s professional organization), and now is the time of year when the organization elects its executive boards. It is at this time former leaders will step down, and visions are formed using ideas for the future alongside experiences of the past. Across the country, executive boards will be named, and this Thursday, the four newly-elected executive board member positions of the Hill Country Chapter of the WCR will be installed. While this happens every year, this year is different: all four of these executive positions have been filled with Keller Williams agents.
For the 2017 year, Paula Durocher has been named president, Jan Boyle has been named vice president, Patti McDaniel has been named treasurer, and Raquel Wallace has been named secretary. All four of these exceptional women are Realtors with Keller Williams New Braunfels.
Paula Durocher, Jan Boyle, Patti McDaniel, and Raquel Wallace (not pictured), all of KW New Braunfels, have been elected as executive board members of the Hill Country chapter of the Women's Council of Realtors.
Durocher, a partner of the Smartt Team Real Estate Group and no stranger to the WCR, has served as the 2016 president-elect and the 2015 Outreach Chair. Additionally, she was named the WCR Hill Country 2015 Entrepreneur of the Year. Along with her dedication to the WCR, Durocher is extremely active in the community, with memberships in several organizations including SCUCISD PTO, TREPAC, and the Four Rivers Association of Realtors, where she serves as co-chair of the Scholarship Committee.
“I am both excited and looking forward to the upcoming year,” said Durocher. “The other board members and I have met and developed goals for 2017. We are really looking forward to implementing them in an effort to get our fellow Realtors involved in the great programs we have planned.”
She goes on to explain how the organization helps its members in elevating their profession with education, industry knowledge, and networking opportunities. “One of the great benefits of being involved in WCR is the networking. Whether you network with someone in the (real estate) industry, in your area, at the state level, or nationally, you are creating connections that are helping to build your business. That to me is a huge benefit.” Durucher adds, “Through (that) networking you have the ability to earn referrals from all over the U.S., BUT, you have to get involved, and that is where the board comes in. It’s our job to give WCR members benefits that make them want to be involved, and we look forward to doing just that.“
Durucher and the other executive board members will represent one of 26 WCR chapters in Texas. Installation of these board members will take place at a banquet at New Braunfels’ Seekatz Opera House on Thursday, November 17, 2016.